The Arab territory has long been ignored on the Internet, but that situation is about to change pretty soon. After Yahoo acquired Arabic portal Maktoob
, Google has recently announced that it will be offering its News service in four Arab countries: Egypt, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates.
With the Internet crowding up, good services can be found at any step (URL). Well, this is not the case for Arabic-speaking countries that lack a specific and native online content over the web. After many years when economical and political conditions in those countries have kept them at a distance from advanced technologies like computers and the online medium, recent developments like the wealth acquired by these countries from oil exports, the drop in PC and bandwidth costs and the extended peace periods in these zones have led to a boom in Internet usage.
has successfully acquired the biggest online Arabic portal, Google does what it does better: break in raw markets. Smelling fresh meat, and especially expandable, oil-made money, these Internet giants have went on a hunt, making the first steps in conquering the Arabic world, one of George W. Bush's unfulfilled dreams.
The Google News
service will provide Arabic-translated or original news headlines in major categories like Entertainment, Sports, Business, and much more. There will be no difference between the original News service provided by Google
worldwide and the Arabic version. Apart, maybe, from the right-to-left text direction.
“With more than 40 million Arabic-speaking internet users across multiple countries, we understand the need to provide our users with the most relevant news for their region.” William Kanaan, Middle East and North Africa product manager, said. “We're very excited to offer this service to our Arabic users in Egypt, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, and the UAE, and we look forward to covering the rest of the Arab countries in the near future!”